Water Level Fluctuations (WLF) in Wisconsin Impoundments: Evaluation of the Efficacy of WLF for Stabilizing Emergents at Puckaway - NER 3_11


Lake Puckaway has experienced dramatic losses of emergent plants (bulrush, phragmites, Z aquatica, sedges) over the last several decades( Kavanaugh 2009, Bach et al 2008). This loss is believed to be from the implementation of artificial water level fluctuations( WLF) on the lake. Emergent aquatic plants (EAP) respond negatively to early summer elevated WLF. An adaptive strategy to stabilize and restore the lost EAP, was adopted by the LPPRD in 2009. This strategy employs a modified WLF schedule that involves an approx 4 week delay of board placement at the Princeton dam in order to effect more supportive WLF for the growth and stabilization of EAP. This action effectively lowers the water levels on the lake (compared to normal WLF schedule) by 18 cm for up to 4 weeks.


Evaluate the efficacy of modified water level fluctuations relative to emergent plant stabilization: will lowering water levels in the early summer period affect the status of Puckaway's emergent plant community ?


Performance Measures: 1) Number of sample sites associated with the project. Four sites will be established. Three of the sites (impact sites) are located in the west, mid, and east areas of Puckaway. The fourth site is located on Buffalo lake and will serve as a control. 2) Number of sampling events associated with project. One event annually will be completed in August (period of 5 years) 3) Estimated date when sample collection will be complete. we estimate sampling will be completed by Aug 31 2010 4) Estimated date when all data will be entered into appropriate database. Dec, 2010 5) Estimated date when final report will be complete. Status report prepared annually Jan 2011. A final report will be completed in Jan 2015.

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Lake Puckaway wbic 158700 Four (4) primary sites are designated for evaluation monitoring with each site covering up to 5 acres. Three of the impact sites will be located on Puckaway with one control site located on Buffalo Lake. At each site, a sampling grid will be set up to overlay the site and 15 random stations (1 sq m) assigned to the grid for actual monitoring. The location of the 4 sites is as follows ; Site 1 (control site) Buffalo Lake near Packwaukee , pw Site 2 (impact site) north west Puckaway (Dead Creek)dc Site 3 (impact site) south central Puckaway (Bluebill Bay)bb Site 4 (impact site) south east Puckaway (Maiden Island)mi Each of the 15 stations at the 4 sites (60 stations total) will be monitored for stem density and species annually in August of each year for consecutive years during the modified WLF implementation period, a minimum 5 year time frame. The first monitoring event is anticipated to occur in August , 2010 and be repeated in August of years 2011 thru 2014. Data from the EPS evaluation will be reviewed annually by the adaptive management committee (AMC) with subsequent recommendations made to the District Board by the AMC.